Arctic forest change in a warming climate

Lead Research Organisation: Durham University
Department Name: Geography

Abstract

Jack Marchant's project details are as follows:
Title : Arctic forest change in a warming climate
Outline:
Biomes and the transition zones between them are expected to shift under the influence of a changing climate because of species' range shifts. One such very important transition zone is that of the boreal forest to arctic tundra and the potential for forest advance into tundra with climatic warming. Shifts in dominant vegetation type have profound potential impacts upon both energy balance, as well as sign and magnitude of exchanges of greenhouse gases between land and atmosphere, along what is Earth's most extensive (by area) ecological boundary. These shifts, in turn, may feedback to promote further enhanced warming across Arctic regions and beyond. Since such shifts may be more varied than a simple, uniform, poleward displacement (Rees et al. 2020) key questions requiring urgent attention are: whether or not forest advance is underway around the circumpolar Arctic and, if so, at what rates, where and why?
This project will build upon previous, complementary, work of the supervisors in determining forest structure and potential transitions as a result of change, combining both remote sensing and plant ecology approaches, as well as drawing upon recent studies by others at localities around the circumpolar Arctic (Rees et al. 2020, and references therein) as a solid starting point. A remote-sensing-led approach will allow us to expand significantly beyond the currently rather patchy distribution of reported sites and associated studies at localities around the Arctic. This is particularly relevant at the current time when addressing the dearth of relevant information for much of the Russian Arctic at a time of many geopolitical challenges for physical study.

Publications

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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
NE/S007431/1 01/10/2019 30/09/2027
2863197 Studentship NE/S007431/1 01/10/2023 31/03/2027 Jack Marchant